One passenger’s birthday celebrations went bust after his EasyJet flight got canceled at the last minute after an initial delay of two hours. It is believed that the delay and the subsequent cancellation occurred as a result of ATC strikes across the continent. However, EasyJet was more than aware of these strikes beforehand.
Paul Davies and a group of his friends arrived at Bristol Airport to board their EasyJet flight to Spain. The group was heading to Alicante on a 5-day trip for Paul’s 50th birthday celebrations. Each person had spent around £300 on the tickets.
A day of disappointment
The flight was scheduled to take off at 7:45 PM on a Sunday. Instead, the group found themselves waiting at the departure lounge for over two hours before the eventual cancellation occurred. According to media reports, Paul and his friends were made to wait for two hours without any notification or prior information.
It is believed that the group had entered the departure lounge only at 9:30 PM, much behind schedule. However, when they tried to board the delayed flight, they were told by staff that the flight had been canceled due to the ATC strikes in France.
The staff had instructed the passengers to rearrange their flights using the EasyJet app. However, the app eventually crashed after everybody tried to do the same simultaneously. According to Paul, there was no assistance available at the help desk as well. Passengers were beginning to get irate and the frustration was getting to the children as well.
Paul told the media that his holiday had been ruined. He mentioned that EasyJet offered no help at all and that somebody obviously knew that such an issue was going to crop up. Paul and his friends had spent a total of £3,000 for the trip but were still unable to change the stay dates because the hotels were already overbooked due to the summer period, which is an extremely busy one.
Paul added that if he had known that something like this was going to happen, he would’ve stayed in Cardiff and reported for work. Now, he is forced to unnecessarily waste 8 hours of work time. He was also distressed about the fact that this had to happen during a special period – his 50th birthday. However, he added that some passengers were obviously having it worse, especially those with children.
RyanAir affected as well
Apart from EasyJet, RyanAir also faced a barrage of delays and cancellations due to the French ATC strikes. The former sent out a Tweet later in the week warning passengers to recheck their respective statuses for the weekend.
ATC Update – 24th June: pic.twitter.com/rpDp6I3pmD
— Ryanair (@Ryanair) June 24, 2018
An EasyJet representative issued a statement attributing the widespread delays and cancellations to the ATC strikes. He/she mentioned that the flight to Alicante had to be canceled for the same reasons and that passengers were given the option of transferring to the next available flight for free or claim a refund. EasyJet claimed that it also provided meals and accommodation to those affected.
The carrier then referred to the situation as being outside their control and apologized for the inconvenience caused.